As the prices of cryptocurrencies have risen in recent months, so too has public interest in this new financial technology. Inevitably, more and more members of the general public are discovering the appeal of cryptocurrencies for the first time, and are eager to buy bitcoins of their own. Today we provide you with our Local Bitcoins Review!
Cryptocurrency is a relatively new field of technology, and few people truly understand the intricacies of the blockchain, public and private keys, or digital wallets.
Most customers simply want a service which allows them to buy and sell cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin as easily as possible, while remaining safe. This is where service providers like Local Bitcoins come in.
Accounts and Services
Local Bitcoins began trading in 2012. It is currently based in Helsinki in Finland.
Presently, Local Bitcoins connects bitcoin sellers with buyers across 248 countries and creating a new account takes very little time. Buyers can search for vendors who are selling bitcoins at a price that they want, and then agree terms such as the total fee, and the payment method directly with the seller.
Every user is validated by a feedback system, which is generated by past transactions. This allows buyers to evaluate the quality of individual vendors. New users have no feedback, and will experience slight limitations on the volume of trades they can perform – until they have built up a portfolio of successful transactions.
There is more direct security measures provided on the site, too. Local Bitcoins provides an in-built escrow facility for all customers. This allows money from the customer and the vendor to be held by an on-site account, and only released once both parties are happy to finalise the transaction.
This part of the service is fast, and has a good reputation for fairness and security. It is recommended – both by the site management and by its community of users – that all transactions are conducted via the escrow service.
Bitcoin is a frictionless currency which was developed to provide fast, low cost transactions. In theory, a Local Bitcoins transaction can therefore be completed in as little as five minutes. In practice, the time taken for a transaction to be completed may be somewhat longer: from thirty minutes to more than twelve hours. However, delays are rarely the product of the Local Bitcoins site itself, and all cryptocurrency trading platforms are affected by similar latency issues at various times. Delays are more usually caused by blockchain processes, or by regulatory procedures undertaken by an account holder’s banking organisation.
Security and trustless payments are core concepts of cryptocurrency technology. Users who use the site as intended, and make use of its security features, should experience no problems while trading.
However, due to the rising value of cryptocurrencies, and the relative newness of the technology, various scams do exist. Some users have reported being targeted by traders who request payment via pre-paid Moneypak cards, or Amazon gift vouchers. Buyers should never use these cash payment methods, even if they are promised an attractive discount on their purchase of bitcoins. These transactions are not secure, and have very little in the way of redress, should the trader fail to uphold their end of the agreement.
Summary and Verdict
LocalBitcoins is a robust service that allows traders to buy and sell bitcoins. The Local Bitcoins brand name has an established history and is relied upon by the cryptocurrency community at large.Local
As with any digital currency, regulation currently remains in a legal grey area – all of the activities on the site are legal, but there is a lack of specific governing laws concerning the trading of bitcoins in many jurisdictions. Some transactions conducted through the platform may therefore receive greater scrutiny from your own banking organisation than a conventional payment method.
Account holders should be aware of local laws, and it is strongly advised that users discuss cryptocurrency transactions with their personal banking organisation before executing any trades on the site.
As a fast, secure, and convenient way to enter the world of cryptocurrencies, local bitcoins offers a reliable and user-friendly experience with a large and established user base.